Thailand Beach Help

Apr 16th, 2006, 07:04 PM
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Thailand Beach Help

We are going to Thailand end of January, 2007. We need recommendations on a non-commercial, beautiful beach with scuba diving. Married 23 years, aged 48 & 50. Fodorites are so HELPFUL. Thanks.
afields is offline  
Apr 16th, 2006, 08:17 PM
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tell us about your budgets and what you are specifically looking for and for how long....any bkk stop??
rhkkmk is offline  
Apr 17th, 2006, 04:24 AM
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We don't mind paying up to $400 per night, but want to be on a beautiful beach and not in a commercial center. This part of our trip is for scuba diving and relaxation.

Thanks for your help!
afields is offline  
Apr 17th, 2006, 02:53 PM
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Koh Lanta could well be interesting for you. Weather fine at that time. There are some restaurants, very little shopping though or nightlife, but beautiful, quiet and relaxing.
As long as you appreciate Koh lanta 'is' for relaxing that's fine. An alternative is a busy island such as Phuket but staying on a quieter beach. You should find Koh lanta relaxing and the pace is not so fast.
You fly to Krabi and then road and boat from there.
Do decide though if you do want to have some shopping, larger choice of restaurants and more activities because in that case you might want to think about a quiet beach place on Phuket. But if you want absolute beachfront and lazy days together with beach walks etc it's a nice place.
JamesA is offline  
Apr 17th, 2006, 03:10 PM
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Koh Yao meets all of your criteria. There are several resorts there that look very, very fine. Koyao Island Resort
Paradise Koh Yao
are the two I can think of right now...there is another really nice one, but I can't for the life of me remember it right now. If you google Koh Yao and/or Koyao you'll find them all I'm sure. lists a couple too in the Khao Lak area listings.

KimJapan is offline  
Apr 17th, 2006, 10:11 PM
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I have not stayed in Koh Lanta, but in general in most of Thailand there is NO diving directly from any hotel beach. (Well not any good diving, lets put it that way.) You have to take a boat out to get to good sites. If people have stayed on Koh Lanta and have had good diving directly from hotel beaches, then please post on this. Generally, that is not the case. You need to go to deserted islands, atolls and reefs for the really superb diving. I mention this so you know what to expect and so that you make an informed choice of where to stay. You can easily stay on Phuket in a more secluded beach area and hire boats for the day, or join the more commercial day boats. You could stay in Koh Lanta and do day trips from there as well (assuming that the deal is the same in that there is no diving directly from beach hotels).

There are also no private beaches in Thailand, so you will get hawkers, massage ladies, etc at most beaches. Some hotels, like the Aman ad the Chedi are located on beaches to which public access is difficult so that they are essentially private, but for the most part, it is hard to avoid the hawkers. The JW Marriott has a limited amount of hawkers because it is off by itself on its own stretch of beach and there is no town nearby. I think both Meridiens are also fairly secluded. The beach in the Laguna area (the Banyan Tree and the Sheraton are here) is quite pretty but is a little more commercial. The beaches of the Patong area are probably the most commercial in this sense, so you probably want to avoid hotels along that strip. The hawkers are not a huge problem, IMO, but again I mention it so you understand that there is no such thing as a "non commercial" beach in Thailand.

In January I agree that you would want to be on the Phuket side of Thailand. Good time of year for diving. Rather than a hotel, if diving is the purpose of the trip, you could also consider a live-aboard boat to get further out into the Adaman sea and really away from it all and even better diving.

If you choose Phuket, in that price range I think I would recco the JW Marriott. More secluded. You can hire boats from the nearby boat basin.
Cicerone is offline  
Apr 17th, 2006, 11:10 PM
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Koh Lanta is the right mix of quiet beaches and availability of dive trips by boat. Phuket is really rather commercial.

More info on Koh Lanta and Koh Lanta diving:
koratcat is offline  
Apr 18th, 2006, 01:41 AM
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There may not be any private beaches in Thailand, but the Pimalai on Koh Lanta is secluded & the beach there has no hawkers. They have boats that take you on dive trips. This year we went to Phuket & stayed at Andaman White Beach resort & the beach there was also completely secluded with no hawkers.
CFW is offline  
Apr 18th, 2006, 07:07 AM
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You stayed at the Adaman White Beach Hotel. Was it too close to the airport? What kind of room did you have? Did you go scuba diving?

afields is offline  
Apr 18th, 2006, 07:22 AM
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If Diving is your thing then I would stay in Phuket (it's very commercial) places such as the Amari Coral Beach have their own private beaches though.

They're 3 beaches there. Patong, Karon, and Kata. (I always misspell them.)
Patong is the party beach, Karon is less commercial and the sand squeaks when you walk on it. Kata has some excellent restraunts and is more low key.

The reason I reccommend Phuket is because the Similan Islands are mine and maybe most people's favorite dive spot.

I remember my first time we were there with this girl from New Zealand and she said to us "you're going to hate every other place in the world after doing the similan islands."
she was right.
Marc_from_Canada is offline  
Apr 18th, 2006, 07:44 AM
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We just returned from a magnificent, small resort on Ko Lanta (get there from Krabi or Phuket), which is on a quiet, lovely beach with beautiful sunsets, plenty of diving and snorkeling trips. The room was in the $250 range, lovely with a spa type bathroom. The hotel is luxurious and terrific. Management is eager to please. Breakfasts are great. You can stay there and have everything on the premises or go into town for a change of pace. The water is clear and warm. The hotel is Layana.
sybilny is offline  
Apr 18th, 2006, 08:29 AM
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The best diving in January is undoubtedly around the Similan and Surin Islands. We dived at this time of year a few years ago from a liveaboard and had some great diving. If you dont like the idea of a liveaboard then there are some nice hotels in Khao Lak (about 2 hours drive north of Phuket- check out the new 5* boutique hotel @ or maybe Le Meridien Phuket both of which should come in your price range. We stayed at the Similana which was also very nice and situated on a completely deserted beach.
crellston is offline  
Apr 18th, 2006, 05:30 PM
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Afields, Though Andaman White Beach is only about a 15 -20 minute drive from the airport, it is worlds apart in a lush area with a stunning beach & blue,blue water. We had a beachfront villa which had both an indoor & outdoor shower, and a large deck with tropical foliage & flowers surrounding it & literally steps away from the beach. The beach is completely "private" and the area is very isolated so you need to rent a car or arrange for taxi service wherever you want to go. We basically just enjoyed being there & relaxing for a few days at the end of a three week trip in Thailand & Luang Prabang. We had planned to go out for dinner one night but the Thai food there was amazing & we cancelled our dinner reservation at Mon Tri's! I do not know about scuba diving since we did not go, but I'm sure the hotel can arrange something for you or you can arrange it yourself with a dive organization.
CFW is offline  
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